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almond

Cucumber chocolate?

Can you combine cucumber and chocolate in desserts? If you check the Foodpairing tree of cucumber (click on the picture for the dynamic pop-up), you will find in the category of pastry/ chocolate (bottom left) ingredients like milk chocolate (lait) from Vanuatu.

Now, how do you get started?

First of all, select the ingredients looking at the cucumber Foodpairing tree. You will find also hazelnut, honey, almonds, lemon, black and green tea.

Next step is to make different textures with the ingredients;

With the lemon and almond, you can make a crumble;

175 g of flour, 100 g almond powder, 125 g butter, 225 g sugar, 3 lemon zeste, 100 g cocoa butter

Mix the first 4 ingredients till you obtain a sandy dough. Bake at 175°C till it’s golden brown. Let it cool down. Mix the crumble with the melted Belcolade Cocoa Butter. Pour the crumble in a circle of  14cm and freeze

With the honey and hazelnut, you can make a honey hazelnut biscuit;

500 g eggs, 200 g hazelnut powder, 175 almond powder, 175 g honey, 200 g icing sugar, 100 g flour, 330 g egg white, 50 g sugar

Whip everything together, spread out on a baking tray. Bake at 240°C for 5min.

The cucumber is transformed into a Cucumber jelly;

500 g cucumber juice, 80 g sugar, 40 g honey, 10 g gelatin

Make fresh cucumber juice and heat up the juice till 40°C together with the honey. Add the gelatin, pour in a Flexipan mould 14cm and freeze it.

The black tea can be combined with Vanuatu chocolate: Black tea creme;

450 g Cream 35%, milk QS, 20 g black tea, 570 g Vanuatu 44 milk chocolate, 100 g butter

Boil the fresh cream and the black tea and let it infuse for 5 min. Pass through a sieve and add milk till you have your original weight of 450g again. Heat up again till 85°C and pour onto the Belcolade Origins Vanuatu 44. Mix to obtain a homogeneous filling. When the cremeux reaches a temperature of 35°C, add the butter and mix again. Pour the Black Tea Cremeux on top of the Crumble Lemon. Put on top of this a layer of the Hazelnut Honey Biscuit and freeze.

To finish chocolate mousse;

250 g milk, 250 g cream, 100 g egg yolk, 550 g milk chocolate Vanuatu 44, 6 g gelatin, 450 g cream

Boil the milk with the cream and pour this onto the egg yolks. Add the Belcolade Origin Vanuatu 44 and mix. Add the gelatin and mix again. Add the semi whipped fresh cream. Fill 1/3 of a circle with mousse. Take the insert and the Cucumber Jelly from the freezer. Place the Cucumber Jelly on top of the insert and put it in the circle upside down in the mousse. Freeze it.

You can compose all these layers into a pie like this Astroid by Michel Eyckerman

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Land of cotton; bourbon and peanut cherry lime

The land of cotton by Stuart White is a nice example of what Foodpairing can lead to. I don’t think Stuart White applied our Foodpairing to combine bourbon and peanut, but if you have a tiki mindsent the chance is very high you will end up with a combination based on Foodpairing. Rum and butter a surprise? No really if you use Foodpairing (and you will find it much more easier).

Not sure how Stuart came up with the combination, but this is how it could work;

Image you live in a place like Georgia where lots of peanuts are grown. Peanut are nut like … almonds. Why not replace the almonds from the orgeat by peanuts?

House-made Peanut Orgeat (by Stuart White):
500 grams skinless blanched Georgia peanuts
800 milliliters water
700 grams sugar
100 milliliters white whiskey
Ok, then you want to know which distilled drink to combine. If it is a tiki drink, you would probably go for rum, but as the list view show you, bourbon and peanut is a better match than rum (ranking indicated).
Peanut and whisky is not new; peanut butter infused whisky was done at tailor like Dave Arnold indicates in this nytimes article from 2010.
Top of the list was actually Cointreau. I would make sense to add Cointreau, but maybe that would have been an obvious variation on a mai tai. Fruity notes can also come from eg cherry. But it could also have been pineapple, coconut, mango, but ya…if you want to make a local cocktail that is maybe not an option, from the Foodpairing explorer indicates that blackcurrant, plum, cranberry, cherry also work.
which makes finally a whisky-peanut-cherry-lime combination.
You can find the complete recipe at starchefs (also source picture cocktail)
And more inspiration in the Foodpairing tree;

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Kumara combinations by Attica

Not familiar with Kumara (sweet potato)  I came across a dish from the tasting menu by Attica; Kumara-almond-Pyengana (a type a cheddar cheese from Tasmania)

(source picture)
The Foodpairing tree of sweet potato contains indeed ingredients like almond, egg, buckwheat, shallot (indicated in bold), but also have a look at the other ingredients around sweet potato and come up with other existing combinations

As you can see the ingredients selected by chef Ben Shewry cluster all around the sweet potato; egg yolk, cheddar cheese, almond, shallot, buckwheat. So a nice example of Foodpairing.

The Chimay we didn’t analyzed yet, but we are working on loads of Belgian beers which will be added in the coming time.

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BAR 10: WHISKEY ANALYZED TOGETHER WITH DAVE BROOM

For Bar 10-The drink factory we made together with Dave Broom a start of a flavour wheel for whiskey where origin was linked to molecules to foodpairing combinations.
During the lecture at Bar 10, each molecule was explained during a talk integrating Longmorn just after distillation, to 12 years old, to 16 years old. Cocktails made Longmorn 16 years, peach, almond and Chivas 12 years licorice lemon.

[+ Bar 10]

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